Shrieks of joy rise above the song as a conga line forms. There’s not much room for dancing. The classroom is the size of a doublewide trailer. About 50 people bob up-and-down and sing, “This is the day the Lord has made.”
The men and women collapse onto the floor in laughter. IMB missionaries William and Nancy Potter* bask in the warmth of the fellowship of these new believers in Southeast Asia. They traveled from far off villages for this discipleship training.
In the past year, new house churches have popped up left and right in this area as a result of pregnancy health classes combined with a discipleship and church planting method called Training for Trainers (T4T). The health classes they developed do not require special medical degrees. In fact, local Christians teach everything from washing hands to burping babies. They also teach Bible stories and model elements of “church.”
“We disciple and train the leaders and they go to the next village,” Nancy says. “They are able to communicate at a deeper level … what we are seeing now is a real acceleration of the Gospel.”
William adds that their goal is to take the Gospel to every village among their people. The fastest and best way is through local believers because they have access, networks and speak on a “heart level.” For $300 the Potters can train new believers to meet basic medical needs, share their faith and start new churches.